Release Date: September 27, 2019
Catalog #: NV6248
Format: Digital & Physical
21st Century


The Music Of Jeffrey Jacob

Jeffrey Jacob composer

In 2016, composer and pianist Jeffrey Jacob conducted interviews with children of illegal immigrants, whose plight ended up inspiring the pianist’s fifth symphony. Remarkably for a contemporary composition, the work is quite condensed timewise; nevertheless, it packs the whole gamut of human sentiment, with the movements titled I. Lagrimas [Tears], II. Fear; Grace, and III. Separation, Grief; ResolutionTriumph.

Next up are three works for piano and orchestra, with Jacob at the piano. His clarity of tone is striking and the perfect fit for his own compositions. For a 20th-century composer, Jacob’s music is surprisingly tonal. The sound is unique and evocative; had Olivier Messiaen studied with Rachmaninoff, the Adagietto from Jacob’s Piano Concerto No. 2 might well be the result. Epitaph (In Memoriam) is fittingly epic for its title and, in style, highly reminiscent of Shostakovich’s piano concertos. A highlight of the album, however, appears in the form of the two-movement The Persistence of Memory, in which Jacob shifts his aim from the 20th to the mid-19th century. After a modern introduction, the listener is greeted with a quotation of Schumann’s Fantasy Dance, and the beautifully lamenting solo cello contrasted with lyrical piano lines is a direct reminder of the German composer’s Piano Trio No. 2.

Lastly, the pianist harks back to the centerpiece of DREAMERS, his symphony: a lone oboe interspersed with electronics brings both the album and the fifth symphony’s subject to a close. The outward circumstances have not changed; but the intangible remains the same.


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Artist Information

Jeffrey Jacob

Jeffrey Jacob


Jeffrey Jacob is described by the Warsaw Music Journal as “unquestionably one of the greatest performers of 20th century music,” and the New York Times as “an artist of intense concentration and conviction.” He received his education from the Juilliard School (Master of Music) and the Peabody Conservatory (Doctorate) and counts Mieczysław Munz, Carlo Zecchi, and Leon Fleisher as his principal teachers.

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